5/4 Cardinals 5, Cubs 4

Yadier Molina hit a tiebreaking two-run single with two outs in the ninth off Hector Rondon to lift the Cardinals to a 5-4 victory over the Cubs, snapping Chicago’s three-game winning streak. Sunday was Rondon’s third straight game, and he entered in the ninth with the game tied at 3.

“[The ninth inning] is really tough because I need to come in aggressive against the hitter,” Rondon said. “I tried to make a good pitch today but something happened. I tried to throw a pitch for a breaking ball but it went for a base hit.”

With one out, Rondon walked Randal Grichuk and Mark Ellis singled. Rondon, who was 3-for-3 in save opportunities, picking up two of those Friday and Saturday against the Cardinals, then struck out Peter Bourjos, but he walked Matt Carpenter to load the bases for Molina. The veteran then lined a 1-2 pitch to center, driving in Grichuk and Ellis.

“I was looking to not strike out,” Molina said. “I mean, I got real lucky with that — they were playing me to pull. It was a good at-bat. He wanted to strike me out and I put the ball in play and good things happened.”

Rondon said he wasn’t tired; he’d only thrown seven pitches on Saturday.

“I tried to throw a sinker inside but it stayed a little in the middle,” Rondon said. “It was down and that’s why I got a ground ball. He fought me with a lot of pitches. I tried to go away, away, away, and finally I tried to go in. I missed the location but I still made a good pitch. I got a ground ball.”

Manager Rick Renteria is going with matchups as they try to fill the closer’s role.

“Every game is a test,” Renteria said. “He needs to keep his head up. Games like this are going to happen. He went out there and he wanted the ball.”

– Carrie Muskat

7 Comments

PUT LAKE IN AND LEAVE HIM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PUT OLT IN AND LEAVE HIM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How hard is this? We suck lets at least see if we have a piece for the future at these positions. If it goes wrong we get a better pick in the draft next year.

I agree from this side of the dugout. It was a very good weekend for the Cubs, beating Wainwright, Wacha and the Cardinals.
Very good weekend for Rondon, even taking the loss last night. I think Renteria may have wanted that sweep so bad, he might have used and possibly put to much pressure on Rondon.
We have to remember Renteria is learning also. He is doing ok, there is a few things I would do differently though. I would give Olt at least a month playing everyday. I would not be playing Barney except as a defensive replacement in later innings. I would not play Scherholtz against LH pitching, even if he thinks he can hit them. Lake looks like hes going to be a streaky type hitter, if hes hot, let him play.

did he want to beat the Cardinals??? Look at the guys he put on the field to do that. The lineup last night was terrible…. No Castillo… No streaking Lake….. Not possible power with Olt at 3rd…. had freaking barney in there who can’t hit his way out of a wet paper bag…. brings in Villanueva in relief first thing. The game got close and Renteria was like “O CRAP we could actually win this game”. When is Theo going to pull a Billy Beane and trade away an OFer or two so Lake has to play everyday? LOL ok that was a little exaggeration but seriously why is it even worth playing anyone but Lake in LF and Olt at 3B. Valbueno needs to be at 2nd. Bonafacio is doing great in CF. Let the platoon play in RF. Quit messing with the other guys

Thats the problem petry,the As’ they are not. They are trying to play every one hoping it can catch on but it absolutely has not. If it did work there would be every team in baseball doing it,minus these mega salary players. Oakland,Tampa the Orioles,Royals maybe, a few other teams just seem to keep doing it,in a major market like Chicago much more is expected so results are that much more impacted.I actually thought the series went well but like everyone else would like to see some consistency with a lineup. Oakland the Cubs are not,there is absolutely no identity to this team!

Aloha KenlyCub- very good points as I have been watching the A’s for years and as you mentioned it is a different market as well. I hate to say it but in the Bay Area the spotlight has not been on the A’s for years, they do not have the fan base nor the media attention that the Cubs have. One thing that petrey mentions that I was wondering was about the lineup Renteria choose for Sunday. I do not hold Rondon responsible, I felt he had a great week and was called upon a lot. Even with the lineup and the Cubs being down yesterday, they came back, that was encouraging. I felt that Olt and Lake should have been in the lineup as well. Now in defense of Renteria, petrey, and my experiences with ball in the past I could see giving Castillo a break because that position is so wearing on the body. It is difficult to pull somebody especially if they are contributing at the plate! The SF Giants have had this problem too with Buster as they love him behind the plate and at the plate, especially when no one else is hitting. Buster can also play 1st base, so they have found innovative ways to give him days off behind the plate. I do hope like you and many here that Renteria can settle more on a daily line-up as Jasper said he is also going through his own learning curve. Hang in there, hopefully Shark get’s his first win tonight! Mahalo!

Trust me I’ve caught plenty of games …. If I’m playing our biggest rival and going for sweep I’m playing

Aloha k.g. will the fanbase change once there is a new stadium,I always loved those 70s Oakland A’s teams,Dodger teams,YIKES did not mean to hit below the belt there,big Red Machine teams,Oriole and the Pirate teams.That sums it up for that decade,I am just not feeeling any of it with this Cubs team though. It has been a long time, there are better times to come,I hope there could be a little more consistency though. The hardest move would be to take Castro out of the 4 hole,but with Olt there I think it spreads your offense out better. But it has to stay like that,they have to find out who is for real,Castro is not a 4 hole hitter,if you are going to lose a season,find out who can play.Mahalo!

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